Some good thoughts for Rhaegar (and me!) please

Discussion in 'General Mastiff Discussion' started by sjdavenport, Jan 13, 2019.

  1. sjdavenport

    sjdavenport Well-Known Member

    And a happy side note - his insurance covered the vast majority of the cost of these procedures. I won't have dogs without health insurance any more! Mazey taught me exactly how much $$$$$ a dog's health care can cost.
  2. Boxergirl

    Boxergirl Well-Known Member

    Overall, that's not bad news. I hear you on the insurance. I've never had it, but I will with my next dog. Which insurance do you have? When is his knee surgery?
  3. sjdavenport

    sjdavenport Well-Known Member

    Mazey had Healthy Paws at the end. Pretty much everything was pre-existing, so I never filed a claim with them, so I can't say if they're good or not. Dany has Trupanion - I've been very happy with them. They paid for her shoulder OCD surgery, rehab, and ongoing supplements. Filing with them has been easy and painless. Rhaegar has PetPlan. Filing claims with them has been a bit more of a headache, but they still paid out in the end. It's definitely MUCH easier if you get the insurance from day one. No possibility of any pesky pre-existing conditions.
    His consult at VOSM is on February 21st. I'll drive up to Maryland and stay in a hotel with him the night before. His consult is scheduled for first thing the next morning, and they have a surgery slot saved for him the same day. I should be able to take him home the next morning.
    Boxergirl likes this.
  4. Sheila Braund

    Sheila Braund Well-Known Member

    Wow that's a lot of information! Thank you for letting us know....

    This probably isn't the same....but when my Sunny was sick with a chronic had to do with her upper GI track....she had/has heart burn....our vet proscribed antacids... it really's so awful when our fur babies are ill. I'm so glad your boy is in your family.....a family that has the means to look after his extra health issues.
  5. Nik

    Nik Well-Known Member

    I'm glad to hear that the news was not super bad. Poor Rhaegar that's a lot for your boy to go through.

    Boxergirl - I tried the pet insurance for a bit but the problem was it was costing me over $200 a month and basically everything was a pre-existing condition and it was a huge pain to file so I really never got any money back. Perhaps it would be more worth it if i started it with a brand new puppy. And I would definitely probably try to follow sjdavenport's experience and go with the easiest one. lol
  6. Bailey's Mom

    Bailey's Mom Super Moderator Staff Member

    Personally, I have pet insurance and I "can't afford" to be without it. Going through my daughter's problems with her dogs where I had to swing in on vine and pay for expensive bills was it. We had all the dogs signed up together on one policy, but when my daughter moved out, I severed Bailey off that policy and got our own. And here is where they get you, Bailey had had a swollen nipple which they described as a precursor to a cancerous situation, and we had her spayed as a result of that situation, so when I reapplied for insurance, she has pre-existing limitations on anything regarding her reproductive system, i.e., any reappearance of nipple issues, etc., Additionally, she was seen again following having her shots because she got a hard lump which didn't go down for quite awhile, and reflected in the policy update I just received was that this was now a pre-existing condition.

    BUT, and it's a huge "BUT", one operation...just one can be financially disastrous. AND, it can lead to "disastrous" results when you can't afford the life-saving operation or treatment and euthanasia is the only option you can afford.

    HOWEVER, I recently was talking to a couple who have three Great Danes and they have taken a whole other track with this, they opened a TFSA account (Tax Free Savings Account - Canada) and they deposit the amount they'd have to pay for dog insurance into that account. Because they are disciplined investors, they have the money on hand for any emergency, and, if it isn't needed, it keeps growing. If the dogs pass and the money hasn't been used, then they are the richer for not having enriched an insurance company. But...huge "BUT" they are "DISCIPLINED INVESTORS."
  7. Jakesmum

    Jakesmum Well-Known Member

    I've been away and just read this post. I am so happy that Rhaegar made it through the surgery well and that you are getting answers to is health issues. We all know how stressful it is for us and our beloved pets when they are sick. I will definitely be looking into insurance when we decide to get our next puppy, we had our contingency plan with Jake and used all of that and more with all of his health issues.
  8. April Nicole

    April Nicole Well-Known Member

    Glad Rhaegar's procedure went well. Hope he is doing better
  9. sjdavenport

    sjdavenport Well-Known Member

    You are definitely right. They can certainly have a cough associated with acid reflux or even micro-aspirations associated with any vomiting/regurgitation, and that was a big consideration going into the internal medicine consult. We had previously done trials of both famotidine and omeprazole without any improvement. And then the specialist felt like the chest xrays coupled with the bronchoscope indicated a bigger problem.
    Sheila Braund likes this.
  10. sjdavenport

    sjdavenport Well-Known Member

    I'm in the same boat. I truly couldn't afford the level of care (including specialists) that I want for my dogs at this point. I can afford the $160 per month to pay for insurance for both the corsos, but I am not a conservative person. I want my dogs to see specialists, receive every treatment that modern medicine can offer, including alternative medicine, physical rehabilitation, supplements, etc, which the insurance covers. Rhaegar's inhaler for his chronic bronchitis will be $450 every 60 days. I could never afford that on my own.
  11. sjdavenport

    sjdavenport Well-Known Member

    I think with a certain type of owner (we want the most advanced care for our dogs, and we want every single issue addressed) and a certain type of dog (big dogs equal big $$$$$$$), insurance becomes incredibly useful. Even being a vet, with discounts, I am my practice's top 4th client in terms of money I spend there on services and medications. Insurance makes sense for me! I could never put that amount into a savings account.
  12. sjdavenport

    sjdavenport Well-Known Member

    Thanks everyone! So update - we tried a prescription hydrolyzed diet for his IBD. Even though I introduced an incredibly small amount at a time, he responded very poorly. Diarrhea, gurgling, drooling, burping, eating grass. He's never done well on dog food, so I wasn't super surprised, but I wanted to at least give it a try. So now we have switched to a homecooked novel protein/carb diet trial - emu, tapioca, and butternut squash. He seems to be doing much better with that. We'll see where that goes.

    As far as his chronic bronchitis goes, we have started him on an inhaled steroid. We've only been on it for a few days, but so far he has been really good in learning how to use his inhaler. He is such a good boy. Love this boy more than words can say.

    Orthopedic consult in Maryland next Thursday. :(
  13. TylerDurden

    TylerDurden Well-Known Member

    Good luck with the consult in MD! May ask about the clinic? We are in the area, and it is always good to have information on specialists at hand.

    I totally agree with your statements on insurance. We‘ve been using Healthy Paws and have never had any issues. They process claims very quickly. It has never taken longer than 5-7 to get reimbursed. Not exactly sure why, but their general waiting periods don‘t apply to Maryland residents, which is another plus for us.
  14. TylerDurden

    TylerDurden Well-Known Member

    I know a few dog owners who use savings accounts rather than pet insurance, as well. It's certainly an option, but definitely a risk, especially with three Great Danes. If all three needed surgery in one year, this could easily cost them ~15K. The pet insurance would probably kick in right away (depending on the terms and conditions), while it would take quite a while to save 15K this way. I guess it's all really about gambling and risk management (that's how all forms of insurance work). On the other hand, they don't "waste" money for insurance in case their dogs stay healthy. I would probably risk it with one dog, but not with three Giant breeds.
  15. sjdavenport

    sjdavenport Well-Known Member

    I use the Veterinary Orthopedic Sports Medicine Group (VOSM) in Annapolis Junction. They are 5-6 hours from us, but I've had nothing but good experiences with them. I first went to them with my little pit bull (she was a bit of a complicated case), and she had knee and elbow surgery there. More recently, my other corso had shoulder OCD surgery there. Their surgeons are excellent, and I place a lot of trust in their recommendations.
    TylerDurden likes this.

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